Skip to main content
Published 04 April 2024 4 min read
Women's U23

Report: England WU23s 3-1 Sweden

Written by:

Hannah Walker

The Young Lionesses enjoy a positive end to a successful season.

England women’s under-23s ended their 2023-24 season on a high with a 3-1 victory over Sweden at the New Bucks Head Stadium in front of a crowd of 2,335 on Thursday evening.

Missy Bo Kearns netted the opening goal of the match before Kiera Skeels scored the Young Lionesses’ second, all within the first half. Katie Robinson secured the win for the WU23s in injury time, while Evelina Dulian was on target for Sweden to claim their consolation goal.

England produced the first chance of the game just five minutes in when Kearns’ cross was headed into the path of Jess Naz at the far-left post. The Tottenham forward beat her defender in the air but saw her effort whistle wide.

The visitors had a handful of chances early in the first half through Evelyn Ijeh and Monica Jusu Bah, but both players were unable to keep their shots on target.

Emma Coates' side looked certain to break the deadlock 17 minutes in through Aggie Beever-Jones after she drove into the Sweden box, but Ebba Handfast’s last ditch-tackle denied the number nine a clean strike.

But England didn’t have to wait long as they took the lead when Kearns latched onto Ella Morris’ through ball and fired home the opening goal of the night from a tight angle in the 23rd minute.

Skeels doubled the Young Lionesses’ lead just before half time after Beever-Jones chested the ball down brilliantly to tee the Charlton player up for a tap-in and to give England a 2-0 lead at the break.
Katie Robinson secured the win for the WU23s in injury time.
Katie Robinson secured the win for the WU23s in injury time.
The Blue and Yellow came out with a more aggressive style of play in the second half, which presented a more even game.

Ijeh came close to clawing a goal back for the visitors ten minutes after the restart, but Lucy Thomas was fast to smother the ball and saved the close-range effort.

Sweden did eventually find the back of the net as the clock hit 78 minutes when Jusu Bah found Dulian, who was perched just inside the England box, and the substitute nestled the ball into the top-left corner of the goal.

But the Young Lionesses fired back three minutes into stoppage time through Robinson. Laura Blindkilde Brown’s ball forward found Ebony Salmon’s replacement, who fired across the keeper to secure England’s final goal of the game.

The result means Coates’ side complete their European League campaign unbeaten – a positive end to a successful season for the WU23s.

: 1 Lucy Thomas (Birmingham City), 2 Ella Morris (Southampton), 3 Poppy Pattinson (Brighton and Hove Albion), 4 Ruby Mace (Manchester City), 5 Tara Bourne (Sheffield United), 6 Kiera Skeels (Charlton Athletic), 7 Ebony Salmon (Aston Villa), 8 Missy Bo Kearns (Liverpool) ©, 9 Aggie Beever-Jones (Chelsea), 10 Laura Blindkilde Brown (Manchester City), 11 Jess Naz (Tottenham Hotspur)

Substitutes: 12 Katie Robinson (Brighton and Hove Albion) for Salmon 66, 16 Lucia Kendall (Southampton) for Naz 79, 20 Missy Goodwin (Leicester City) for Beever-Jones 89

Substitutes not used: 13 Fran Stenson (Sheffield United), 14 Freya Gregory (Aston Villa), 15 Ruby Grant (BK Hacken), 17 Maisie Symonds (Brighton and Hove Albion), 18 Anouk Denton (West Ham), 19 Hannah Silcock (Blackburn Rovers, on loan from Liverpool), 21 Neve Herron (Birmingham City)

Head coach: Emma Coates

Goals: Missy Bo Kearns 23, Kiera Skeels 47, Katie Robinson 93